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ABEM Messages Regarding COVID-19 Monitoring

Jun 12, 2020

Emergency physicians are facing unprecedented circumstances related to COVID-19, and therefore ABEM is making changes to support physicians effective immediately.

Due to the high volume of calls we are currently receiving, we ask that you please leave a voicemail (517.332.4800) or send your message to abem@abem.org. We will return all of your call and emails as soon as possible. Thank you, and we apologize for any inconvenience.  

Oral Certification Exam

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in ABEM adapting to the ever-changing environment. The most recent development is the aggressive exploration of transitioning the current Oral Exam format to a virtual Oral Exam. The virtual Oral Exam will be piloted and fully implemented in 2021; information from the pilot experience will inform further development of the Oral Exam, post-COVID. (August 5, 2020)

ABEM will provide additional details as they become finalized. 

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, ABEM has made the difficult decision to postpone the fall Oral Certification Examination. The Oral Certification Examination will not be offered at all in 2020. The Board is discussing options for administering the examination in 2021 and will share that information as soon as possible.


ABEM has developed a letter that physicians may provide to employers to verify they have successfully completed the Qualifying Examination and states that they are awaiting assignment to take the Oral Certification Examination. The letter explains that ABEM has canceled the 2020 exams due to COVID-19 and deferred the Oral Exam to 2021. Letters will be available in mid-July. Physicians can contact  oralcertification@abem.org to request a letter. (July 2, 2020)

Archived Statements
Medical Toxicology Cognitive Expertise Examination

The Medical Toxicology Cognitive Expertise Exam will now be administered in an online, open-book format. This exam will be offered in a one-week window in fall 2020 to eligible physicians.

      Exam Dates                        Registration

November 2-8, 2020               March 1 – October 1, 2020



  • The exam can be taken anytime during the one-week testing period
  • The exam is online, open book, taken anywhere you choose
  • The exam is taken alone, without collaboration
  • This approach is designed to increase the opportunity to learn

Review Frequently Asked Questions to learn more about the online Medical Toxicology Cogntive Expertise Exam. 

Continuing Certification Requirements 2020 certification deadlines will be relaxed to June 2021. 
Physicians with certification requirements due December 31, 2020 will have until June 30, 2021 to meet requirements.
Subspecialty Certification Deadlines
2020 subspecialty certification deadlines for ABEM-certified subspecialists will be relaxed as follows:
Requirements Now Due June 30, 2021
Emergency Medical Services
Medical Toxicology
Pediatric Emergency medicine
Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine
Requirements Now Due December 31, 2021
Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine
Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Internal Medicine-Critical Care Medicine
Pain Medicine
Sports Medicine
The new deadlines are based on the policies of the board administering the recertification examination and how often those exams are offered.
ConCert Exam ConCert Exam now offered in an online, open-book format. 

Exam Dates and Fees
Frequently Asked Questions

This exam will be offered in two three-week windows during 2020, 2021, and 2022 to eligible physicians at no additional cost. 

Archived Statements
Residency Training Requirements

ABEM will accommodate a two-week quarantine period without negatively affecting your eligibility. 


Read an open letter to Emergency Medicine residents RE: COVID, quarantine, and ABEM eligibility from ABEM President
Jill M. Baren, M.D., M.S., M.B.A. (March 19, 2020)

Archived Statements

Read an open letter to ABEM-certified physicians and EM residents about recent ABEM Board decisions. (March 27, 2020)

  • Stay Certified
  • Program Directors
  • Become Certified
  • ConCert
  • Oral

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For media and news-related inquires, contact the ABEM Communications Team via email, or 517-332-4800.